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Port Moresby
 National Capital District,
Papua New Guinea
Location of Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea
Population:
(as of 2000)
254,158[1] (1st)
Main languages: Tok Pisin, English, Motu
Language area: Motu
Established: 1873
Elevation: 35 m (115 ft)
Coordinates: 9°25′S 147°17′E / 9.417°S 147.283°E / -9.417; 147.283Coordinates: 9°25′S 147°17′E / 9.417°S 147.283°E / -9.417; 147.283
Port Moresby Town2 Mschlauch.jpg
Downtown Port Moresby
Queensland raises the British flag at Port Moresby 1883
Port Moresby City from space

Port Moresby (pronounced /ˌpɔrt ˈmɔrzbi/), or Pot Mosbi in Tok Pisin, population 255,000 (2000), is the capital and largest city of Papua New Guinea (PNG). The city is located on the shores of the Gulf of Papua, on the southeastern coast of the island of New Guinea.

The area on which the city was founded has been inhabited by the Motu-Koitabu people for centuries. It was first sighted by a European in 1873 by Captain John Moresby. It was named in honour of his father Admiral Sir Fairfax Moresby.

According to a survey of world cities by the Intelligence Unit[2] of The Economist, Port Moresby is one of the world's least livable cities (ranks 137 of 140 cities rated).[3]

Although it is surrounded by Central Province, where Port Moresby is also the capital, it is technically not a part of that province, and forms the National Capital District.

Contents

History

Before colonisation

The Motuan people of the area now known as Port Moresby traded their pots for sago, other food and canoe logs, sailing from Hanuabada and other villages built on stilts above the waters of the bay. They also intermarried with the Gulf people and created strong family and trade links.[citation needed]

The Hiri expeditions were large-scale. As many as 20 multi-hulled canoes or lakatoi, crewed by some 600 men, carried about 20,000 clay pots on each journey. To the Motuans, the Hiri was not only an economic enterprise but they also confirmed their identity as a tribe because of the long and dangerous voyages. These voyages are commemorated in modern times by the annual Hiri Moale Festival held at Ela Beach in September.[citation needed]

Colonisation

The area was already an important trade centre by the time Captain John Moresby of HMS Basilisk first identified the area of the site later to become known as Port Moresby. The Englishman had just ventured through the Coral Sea at the eastern end of New Guinea and upon encountering three previously unknown islands landed there. At 10 o’clock in the morning of 20 February, 1873, he claimed the land for Britain and named it after his father, Admiral Sir Fairfax Moresby. He called the inner reach "Fairfax Harbour" and the other Port Moresby.[citation needed]

Actual European settlement of the site did not occur until a decade later when the southeastern part of New Guinea island was annexed to British Empire. British New Guinea was passed to the newly established Commonwealth of Australia in 1906, and became known as Papua. From then until 1941 Port Moresby grew slowly. The main growth was on the peninsula, where port facilities and other services were gradually improved. The first butcher shop and grocery opened in 1909,[4] electricity was introduced in 1925[5] and piped water supply provided in 1941.[6]

World War II and after

During World War II, some Papuan men enlisted as soldiers in the Papua Infantry Battalion, and others as carriers for supply support to Allied and Japanese armies.[7] Many other Papuan residents of Port Moresby either returned to their villages or were evacuated to camps when the threat of Japanese invasion loomed. The city was home to an important Allied base and thousands of troops were stationed in the area as the last allied bastion on the island and last defense between the Japanese onslaught and Australia.[8][9] This key role resulted in its becoming the objective of a Japanese invasion fleet in May 1942 that was stopped by the Battle of Coral Sea. The Japanese then attempted to take the city by land over the Kokoda Track. During this period Port Moresby, especially its "villages" naturally fell into disrepair and after the war the whole town had to be rebuilt.

In 1945, the Territory of Papua and New Guinea was formed when Papua and the former German New Guinea, which had been administered by Australia since 1918, were amalgamated under a single Australian Administration. Port Moresby was officially designated the capital of the new "combined" territory and a focal point for the expansion of public services.

Capital city of an independent PNG

Front side of the parliament building. The building blends traditional design with modern building technology.

In September 1975, Papua New Guinea became an independent country with Port Moresby as its capital city. New government buildings were constructed at Waigani to house government departments, including a spectacular National Parliament Building, which opened in 1984 and blends traditional design with modern building technology. The PNG National Museum and National Library are also located at Waigani.

Unfortunately, several of these government buildings have now been abandoned due to long-term neglect. Chief amongst these are Marea Haus (known to most locals as the "Pineapple Building") and the Central Government Offices. Nearby buildings such as Morauta Haus and Vulupindi Haus are now starting to show significant signs of decay due to a lack of maintenance, including crumbling fire stairs, grimy restrooms and elevators that are always out of service.

The population of the Port Moresby area has expanded rapidly since independence. In 1980 the census registered 120,000; by 1990, this had increased to 195,000.

The city is often covered by a smoke haze that is created by the numerous small fires lit beside the road or in the bush by its inhabitants. These are left to burn out without intervention by the local fire department.

In 2004, Port Moresby was ranked the worst capital city in the world to live in the Economist Intelligence Unit's ranking of 130 of the world's capital cities. High levels of rape, robbery and murder and large areas of the city controlled by gangs of thugs, known locally as "rascals" (raskol in Tok Pisin), were cited.[8][9] According to a 2004 article in The Guardian newspaper, unemployment rates are estimated to be between 60 and 90% and murder rates three times that of Moscow and 23 times the rate in London.[10]

Regions and suburbs

Port Moresby refers to both the urbanised area of the National Capital District and more specifically to the main business area, known locally as "Town". Other neighbourhoods of Port Moresby include: Koki, with its popular fresh produce market, Newtown, Konedobu, Kaevaga, Badili, Gabutu, Kila, Matirogo, Three Mile, Kaugere, Sabama, Korobosea, Four Mile, Hohola, Hohola North, Boroko, a major shopping area, Gordons, Gordons North, Erima, Saraga, Waigani, Morata and Gerehu. There are also villages like Hanuabada, the biggest village in Papua New Guinea.

Transport

Port Moresby is served by Jacksons International Airport, which is the biggest international airport and the PNG Defence Force Air Wing base in the country. Air Niugini and Airlines PNG both conduct regular domestic and international routes from the airport, while Pacific Blue (Virgin Blue) conducts connections to Brisbane.

Jacksons is served internationally by flights to Brisbane, Cairns, Sydney, Honiara, Nadi, Manila, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong and Narita.

As the national highways system is discontinuous, there are many internal flights to other towns which cannot be reached by minibuses, known as PMVs (Public Motor Vehicles) locally, e.g. Madang.

Climate

Climate data for Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 37
(99)
36
(97)
36
(97)
36
(97)
34
(93)
33
(91)
32
(90)
32
(90)
34
(93)
34
(93)
36
(97)
36
(97)
37
(99)
Average high °C (°F) 32
(90)
31
(88)
31
(88)
31
(88)
30
(86)
29
(84)
28
(82)
28
(82)
29
(84)
30
(86)
31
(88)
32
(90)
30
(86)
Average low °C (°F) 24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
23
(73)
23
(73)
23
(73)
23
(73)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
24
(75)
Record low °C (°F) 21
(70)
21
(70)
21
(70)
18
(64)
21
(70)
18
(64)
19
(66)
19
(66)
19
(66)
20
(68)
21
(70)
21
(70)
18
(64)
Precipitation mm (inches) 178
(7.01)
193
(7.6)
170
(6.69)
107
(4.21)
64
(2.52)
33
(1.3)
28
(1.1)
18
(0.71)
25
(0.98)
36
(1.42)
48
(1.89)
112
(4.41)
1,012
(39.84)
Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/weather/world/city_guides/results.shtml?tt=TT003090 November 2009

Images

National Capital District

Flag of NCD.svg
Flag of National Capital District

Statistics
Capital: Port Moresby
Area: 240 km² (20th)
Districts: None (but three electorates: Moresby North-East, Moresby North-West and Moresby South)
Population:
(as of 2000)
254,158 (9th)
Population Density: 1059.0
Governor:
(since 2007)
Powes Parkop
Map
Papua new guinea port moresby national capital district.png
Map of Papua New Guinea highlighting National Capital District
The original flag of the capital

Twin towns

Associated town:

References

Additional reading

  • Burke, Andrew; et al. (May 2005). Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands (7 ed.). Lonely Planet. p. 222–223. 

External links


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Oceania : Papua New Guinea : Port Moresby
Sunset view from Tugubaga hill Port Moresby
Sunset view from Tugubaga hill Port Moresby

Port Moresby (Pot Mosbi in Tok Pisin) is the capital of Papua New Guinea.

Understand

Port Moresby is quite spread out. The original settlement was by the sea and this is still the port area, as well as the main business and banking district. On the hills above are upmarket residences. The area is served by the Crowne Plaza hotel. Closer to the airport, separated from the original town by hills, is Waigani, a 1970s development built to house the Government offices of the newly Independent country of Papua New Guinea. Nearby are the housing areas of Boroko and Gordons, which also contain most of the large stores.

Get in

Port Moresby is the main point of entry for all air-traffic and most of the boat-traffic. The main local airline is called Air Niugini and flies mainly to and from Australian cities in codeshare with Qantas, but also Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong, and the Philippines. Virgin Blue also flies to Cairns and Brisbane.

Airfares from Australia are quite cheap, especially if you book online and seek one of the special fares. From other countries fares are fairly expensive and it may be cheaper to fly to Cairns and pick up a flight to Port Moresby from there.

Get around

Getting around in and around Port Moresby is somewhat of a problem because visitors do not generally use (or understand) public transport. Walking is not advisable to foreigners at night-time but in most parts of town is fine during the day.

By car

Car rental agencies are available close to Jacksons International airport but driving in Port Moresby might not be what most people are used to. In some areas of POM the locals throw stones at the car, usually just for amusement but in some cases they manage to crack your windshield. There are cases of people standing in the middle of a stretch of road they have mended and demanding compensation from people driving by, and as soon as you get outside of the city the roads deteriorate to muddy trails that only a 4x4 with an experienced driver should attempt.

By taxi

There are actually taxis in Port Moresby, which is quite unusual for PNG, but they are in the majority of cases not safe for foreigners to ride in. The locals usually travel in PMV's (Personal Motor Vehicles) which are minibusses that take you to your destination if it is in the general direction they are headed. The adventurous traveller could probably get around by using that service but there are incidences of PMV's getting pulled over by Raskols (a word deriving from English rascal, currently in use to refer to gang members or criminals in general). and everybody on board being robbed, so a warning is in order.

The best alternative for transport around Port Moresby is to get the hotel to set it up. They usually have a shuttle service from the airport and can organize excursions of different kinds if you ask them nicely. This of course depends on the hotel.

  • The Botanical Gardens A must for the visitor. Has some amazing examples of PNG wildlife such as birds of paradise, a couple of casowaris, and several other native birds. If you are lucky you might catch a wedding while you are there as some locals like to conduct the ceremony in the gardens.
  • Port Moresby Golf Club A nice golf course located right across from the government building. The prices are quite acceptable for visitors. Be careful, crocodiles inhabit the water holes of the golf course. The local caddies sometimes sneak in at night and eat a few of them so they don't overpopulate though. The main building has a nice restaurant where one can have lunch and have a few SP beers (South Pacific beers) after a round of golf.
  • The Ela Beach Craft Market Run by the Ela Murray International School and held on the last Saturday of each month, this market brings together local artifacts from all over Papua New Guinea. An easy way to get some beautiful carvings, handwoven baskets, or any of a number of other things to bring home as souvenirs.
  • Touaguba Hill Perhaps not so much to see, but this is where the ambassadorial residences are located and is also where many of the well-to-do expats and locals live. There is a nice view from the top of the hill overlooking the centre of the city and the ocean.
  • Moitaka Wildlife Sanctuary, Sir Hubert Murray Highway. Numerous crocodiles, some very large, as well as birds and other animals.  edit

Do

Scuba Diving A number of reefs and wrecks are within close proximity to Port Moresby and diving can be arranged through day vessels or on nearby Loloata Island (which has its own dive shop). There are a variety of sites and depths for all experience levels.

Eat

Groceries

There are basically four stores to buy groceries if you are a foreigner in Port Moresby: Andersons Foodland, Stop and Shop in Hohola, and Boroko Foodworld in Boroko and Gordons. Andersons is located right next to the Royal Papua Yacht club and usually suffices. Otherwise there is Foodworld which is larger and located over the hill in Boroko. An even larger and newer Boroko Foodworld is further east in Gordons. What one should bear in mind though is that everything imported might not always be there. Often if you see something you like you have to buy a lot of it because there is no telling when the next shipment is coming. This doesn't apply to basic foodstuffs but rather to things that might not be in high demand such as herring.

  • Asia Aromas, 321 4780. Chinese Restaurant serving great food located inside the Steamships Plaza on Champion Parade in the downtown area. Is popular with the local expatriate community.  edit
  • Daikoku Located inside the Andersons Foodland area, it offers great Japanese cuisine cooked directly at your table (teppanyaki). Don't forget to try the "Puk Puk" which is Tok Pisin for crocodile.
  • Royal Papua Yacht Club Serves good Australian cuisine with some Papua New Guinean touches. Has á la carte menu and a buffet that varies according to the day of the week. An invitation from a member might be required to enter.
  • Crowne Plaza Has a wonderful mediterranean restaurant which is probably the most expensive on the island. But if you feel like splurging this is definitely the place to go, it'll still be a good bargain.
  • Port Moresby Golf Club Has a nice little lunch restaurant which serves á la carte or a buffet during lunch hours.
  • Jepello's Great italian food, and keyboardist who plays pop tunes. Off Waigani Drive, across the street from Big Rooster.
  • Seoul House Decent korean food. Next to 5 Mile service station.
  • Fu Gui Assortment of asian style cuisine. Try the Nasi Lemak chicken. In Gordon's, down the road form RH and Brian Bell.

Drink

The drink of choice in Port Moresby as in the rest of Papua New Guinea is South Pacific lager: "SP beer". To buy alcohol you have to go to one of the characteristic yellow and green coloured shops that are usually integrated into the supermarkets. You don't want to go to the ones that aren't. They have a relatively limited selection of wines, mostly Australian or New Zealand brands. The prices are higher than you would expect because of the taxation of alcohol. The locals tend to get quite rowdy when they drink (as everywhere else) so its best to avoid anyone that seems to be under the influence.

Sleep

One should be aware that hotels are generally quite expensive in Papua New Guinea.

  • Airways Hotel, Jacksons Parade (Located close to the airport), (675) 324 5200 (, fax: (675) 324 5300), [1]. Has both hotel rooms and apartments for long-stay guests. Has a nice pool and a great breakfast buffet. PNG's only delicatessen and an Indonesian spa are also located on the premises.  edit
  • The Crowne Plaza, (In the centre of the business district of Port Moresby and close to Tugubaga Hill.), (675) 309 3000 (fax: (675) 309 3333), [2]. checkin: 1PM; checkout: 11AM. Amenities include a nice pool, an international class restaurant, a fitness centre, and a business lounge  edit
  • Holiday Inn, (Waigani Road & Wards Road), (675) 303 2000 (, fax: (675) 325 0837), [3]. Located a bit off from the centre this hotel has very nice rooms, some sports facilities, and a great pizza restaurant (with live music at times).  edit

Stay safe

Port Moresby has a well-deserved reputation of being very dangerous. Car jackings, muggings and worse are common. There is a great deal of concern about the level of crime and civil disorder and the ability and willingness of the police to cope. Police officers have been found to be complicit in major crime and police brutality against minor offenders, complainants and witnesses has been the subject of criticism from the international group, Human Rights Watch.

It is possible to minimise the chances of becoming a victim of crime by being aware of your surroundings, avoiding places where large groups are gathered and avoiding places where offences are prevalent. The Waigani area, and in particular the area around the traffic lights and the Port Moresby Golf Club, have experienced numbers of car jackings.

It is always wise to seek the advice of a person familiar with Port Moresby before venturing into unknown areas.

Saltwater Crocodiles (Crocodylus porosus) are still common throughout all of Papua New Guinea. However, you are extremely unlikely to run into one.

  • Sogeri Plateau. Fifty km from Port Moresby and, at 800m, an escape from the heat. Sogeri marks the end of the Kokoda Trail, which was the route through the jungle taken by Japanese soldiers in 1942 in an attempt to capture Port Moresby.
This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!

Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

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Wikipedia

English

Proper noun

Port Moresby

  1. The capital of Papua New Guinea.

Simple English

File:Papua New Guinea
Map of Papua New Guinea and Port Moresby

Port Moresby (9°30′S 147°12′E) is the capital city and the main city of Papua New Guinea. It has a population 255,000 (2000). The city is located on the shores of the Gulf of Papua, on the southeastern coast of the island of New Guinea.

The area on which the city was founded was first sighted by a European in 1873 by Captain John Moresby. It was named in honor of his father Admiral Sir Fairfax Moresby.








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